It’s Christmas, Erik Brown

It’s that time of year again.  Retailers are making projections based on their black friday sales, ION Television and the Hallmark channel are competing for how many original Christmas movies about a dog and a retarded kid they can produce and air, every commercial is holiday related, and people are out in droves to buy their second cousin the perfect gift that will show you care enough to think of them, but not quite enough to actually know what they wanted.  Think knitted snowman sweater or quirky tie.  Oh, and be prepared to get Christmas/Holiday cards from your local realtor, auto dealer, department store, and dentist because they care so much about you.

It’s also the time of year when you start getting emails from AFA and other Christmas conscious groups telling you who’s been naughty and nice this year when it comes to mentioning Christmas in their advertising.  (For the record, Gap’s “Go Christmas, Go Hanukkah, Go Kwanzaa, Go Solstice” ad didn’t cut it.  Mostly because it’s annoying.)

Personally, I don’t care.  Does saying Merry Christmas under the threat of a boycott really mean that you are wishing people a Merry Christmas?  Or does it have more to do with you looking at your daily sales figures and hoping that you have a Merry Christmas?  Christmas is what it is, whether the retailers acknowledge it or not.  Come to think of it, what does Christmas gain from us fighting so hard to make sure a bunch of atheist retailers commercialize it?

Still, there are certain grinches who take their anti-religious sentiment too far.  For example, Principle Erik Brown of a school in Waterbury, CT has decided to ban all religious and secular references to anything that might resemble a holiday, celebration, or any other sort of happy thing that might cause kids to take a five minute break from shooting up and shooting each other to sing some sort of deeply religious carol about peace on earth.  As consistent as he is efficient, Christmas trees weren’t the only thing axed.  Even typically secular symbol Santa Claus was removed out of fear of offending someone.  Apparently only bland depression is unoffensive.

Brown did allow for a party celebrating winter; that time of year in Connecticut when the trees are bare, the sky is gray, the ground is brown, and it’s too cold to take off your heavy coat but not cold enough to snow. That’ll get the kids in a festive mood.

Brown was fearful that the sight of bright colors, evergreen branches, red bows, and colored lights would offend some children.  A jolly fat man who gives out presents to good little boys and girls I suppose could be offensive to the bad kids.  And the greatest gift of all, the gift of salvation and peace with God through Jesus Christ has been offensive enough to some people to cause them to enter churches around the world and open fire, or worse.

Did it ever occur to him that banning Christmas might be what the majority of Americans finds offensive?

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